NGCP intensifies construction of transmission projects
The National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) intensified the construction activities of all vital transmission projects affected by the coronavirus lockdown.
NGCP is eager to finish its critical projects as close to the original timelines as possible.
The power grid operator on Tuesday said grid management and critical maintenance activities, including various operations that were critical to the provision of power, continued despite strict lockdowns.
“We started the resumption of critical projects as early as May. Preparations for this resumption began weeks before that. Compliance with IATF and LGU-specific guidelines needed to be in place before we could ramp up our project activities.
Among the most challenging compliances were the RT-PCR COVID testing of our critical project personnel, and securing the COVID test results of our contractors, as well as facilitating the permits to enter of key personnel to and from hotbed areas,” NGCP said in a statement.
NGCP said it continues to encounter issues including testing and quarantine variations among local government units, contractor and supplier delivery problems, the inability of foreign experts to conduct necessary inspections due to travel clearance requirements, the slowdown of manufacturing of equipment and materials from other COVID-19 affected countries and other limitations.
The staggered relaxation of quarantine regulations, even those related to essential industries and construction, has hampered NGCP to fully “return to work” for its construction projects.
Construction works also stopped due to health and safety protocols, and new normal standards such as COVID-19 testing of all manpower, access to transport and mobility issues and government-mandated manpower limitations.
NGCP is continuously assessing the impact of the global health crisis on transmission projects, particularly to the Mindanao-Visayas Interconnection Project, Western Luzon Backbone project, and San Jose-Quezon 230kiloVolt (kV) Line 3 project.
“NGCP is eager to finish its critical projects as close to the original timelines as possible. We are also fully cognizant of the need to restrict movement and activities to help stem the spread of the virus,” NGCP said.
“Project schedules are continually reassessed as varying degrees of community quarantine remain in effect. The time lost is not a simple 1 is to 1 conversion.